Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Trial and Error

This whole experience is one big game of trial and error. I have been getting great advice, reading books, blogs and articles, and just winging it. Sometimes this had paid off, but at other times it has not. One of these not moments has ended, unfortunately, with the demise of all the lettuces I started indoors.

Like many other gardeners, I am completely addicted to Pinterest. I have gotten a ton of great ideas, and some really wonderful information on starting a vegetable garden. Check out my Garden board to see some of the great things I've pinned. One of the ideas I wanted to try was starting seeds in an egg carton. I am always interested in ideas that reuse all the junk I have accumulated, and this seemed perfect.  (Keep an eye out for my Reuse, Repurpose, Reimagine! page for more ideas on reusing "trash" in the garden.) At first it worked great, the lettuces were the first things to pop up, and they seemed to be doing great.

I got mixed opinions from other gardeners on whether or not I should have started my lettuce indoors, and the majority said no, I should direct sow outdoors before the last frost, because they won't transplant well.  If only I'd asked sooner...

The bigger the seedlings got, the unhappier they looked, and I couldnt keep them moist enough. I tried transplanting the lettuce into bigger pots, but I discovered that the roots had started to grow through the cardboard, and the few I did transplant looked very unhappy. 

Slowly, starting with the spinach, then the arugula, and the romaine, they all shriveled up. The Bibb lettuce was the last to hang on, but it didn't make it in the end either. 
The point of all of this is that I learned a lot.  I think if I had started the seedlings a little sooner, and had my beds ready sooner, I could have transplanted them successfully.  But I am not convinced.  I did warn everyone that I am a genuine gardening newbie, but hopefully you can learn a little from my misfortune.  You're welcome.  I'm getting ready to plant my beds, so wish me luck!

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